“Call me a Mudblood.” Hermione taunted again, her snarling expression looked at with disgust. I frowned at her, not knowing what exactly she was trying to do. “Too much of a coward to say it?” She asked, leaning a bit closer to my face with a snide grin. I was still leaning over her in the wooden bench, her loud outburst forced my hand, but now I found it difficult to move away. The closer she came to me, she violated my nose with the scent of parchment and ink, a calming scent that I had grown to love in my passing years at Hogwarts.
Something in me itched at her taunting, the more she did, the better my I could discern her unique scent. I could tell that somehow the beast was stirring in response to her. It was soon to the full moon, yet he seemed to be awakening early in spite of Hermione’s poisoned words. “Stop…” I gasped, baring my fangs, growing sharper with my rage of her. “You’re not calculating, you're just scared to say anything controversial.” She continued, not daring to listen to me. “I’m warning you Hermione…” I growled, feeling a strange desire to prove her wrong in the most instinctual way imaginable.
Hermione shook her head, a deep frown reappearing as she moved her forehead against mine again, staring me down with anger. “No. Because I want to hear you admit to yourself that you are willing to just bury yourself so deep that you won't know who you are anymore.” The beast in me stirred once again, I could gradually feel myself devolving into instinct, my inhibitions waning. I angled my head lower, and grasped Hermione’s throat with my hand, using the other to hold her wrists together above her head. She gasped in shock, fear emanating from her shaking pupils and unsteady breaths whispering down my neck.
With my head angled lower, I could feel her lips, brushing against mine as we both gasped for air. She looked at me, her eyes filling my gaze, fear lingering in her, but as she realized the grip around her throat gave way for her to breathe, something else burned deeper inside. As we both remained frozen in place, my grip around her neck, neither tightening nor waning, her eyes slowly burning brighter with something that wasn’t fear. I sat, wondering what I should do next, Hermione licking her dry lips as we both looked on into each other in silence, the cool breeze drifting the fresh air through the small slit between us, almost pulling us closer to one another for warmth.
“Are you both fighting?” A sudden hiss emanating from the water snapped me out of my strange state. I gasped, leaping up to my feet, licking my own lips, a hint of bubblegum lip gloss stained my tongue. I couldn’t even look at her face, only seeing her bouncing chest as she heaved for breath just as much as me. “Val we’re leaving.” I ordered, as he slithered from the water, and into my sleeve. Without another word between Hermione and I, we left without looking back.
Hermione just laid on the bench, staring up into the clouded sky, trying to ease her pounding heart. Flashes of what just happened kept appearing in her mind, forcing her to come to terms with her feelings of tribulation. His glowing green eyes looking at her with primal urge, Lucas’ inner beast effecting him even in his human form, unpleased with her mocking caused Lucas’ desire to prove his dominance flare. His hand grasping at her throat to keep her silent and still, but somehow letting vital air flow to her lungs. His lips brushing against hers, as if daring her to utter another word, to test his brazenness, almost hoping for her to give him a reason to follow through.
Hermione placed her arm over her eyes, blocking the dull light of the cloud-covered sky into darkness, hiding herself from the world and its judgment of her. She was fearful of what he was threatening to do. Part of that fear was him losing control, and harming her, but something else laid underneath. Amongst it, as she was staring at his jade eyes, a hint of excitement kindled within her. She was terrified of that. Terrified that she might want what he was threatening, perhaps even going as far as to mutter another word to see if he just might; only caught in her throat at the last moment before his snake appeared. “What is happening…?” She muttered to the world, begging for an answer, seeing Lucas’ glowing green gaze staring into her again.
The first day of classes for the new year began a few days later, Ancient Runes being the first, a horror that I had to be in a class with Hermione after the incident. I took the spot in the top corner of the class, others slowly filling in, many dropped out after the first week, leaving only a small handful of students left. Hermione entered the room, with one glance at each other, we both snapped our heads away from one another. The entire room was free for empty seats, but Hermione shuffled to the one beside me, loudly setting her books on the desk beside mine.
There were still a few minutes before class would begin, so I grabbed my books, and began standing up, only to have Hermione blocking the path, looking at the front of the class like I didn’t exist, nor want to move around her. I sighed at her clear provocation, silently daring me to say a word to her. I was already past the night of the full moon, so I was feeling much more myself, I didn’t feel uneasy about losing my temper again.
“Mind moving?” I asked, Hermione glanced at me, but lost interest, looking back at the front of the class as she spoke. “Not until we talk.” I thought about just jumping over desks and heading away from her, but knew that she would just soon follow behind me if I did. “There’s nothing to talk about.” I answered back, sitting back in my seat, Hermione finally turning to talk to me face to face. “I know you want to help Buckbeak.” She sidestepped the issue I was dreading she might be talking about, moving the topic to something I could actually discuss.
I sighed with slight relief, hiding my face behind my hands, stretching my cheeks before speaking. “There is no loophole in the law that I can find, that you couldn’t. I really can’t help you.” Hermione smirked for a moment, taking my words as a compliment, before turning serious again. “I’m not suggesting a loophole through the law.” I furrowed my brow at what she was insinuating. It was the exact same idea I had thought over the few days of break I had hearing the gossip about Buckbeak.
I then noticed the gaze Hermione was giving me, a sinking feeling in my stomach arose from it. “No.” I answered, shaking my head before she could ask. “It would be the best way to avoid accusations of Hagrid setting it free.” She pleaded, but I remained firm. “Not doing it, Hermione.” She didn’t listen to me, only further explaining her idea. “If two werewolves appeared, then Lupin also won’t be accused.” What she said gave me pause, I looked back at her, judging that she was speaking nothing but the truth.
“You… You didn’t know?” Hermione asked, looking at me with just as much shock and confusion as I displayed myself. “I heard that all werewolves can… ‘feel’ each other.” Suddenly that strange kindred ship I had felt for the first time in my life made so much sense. The uncertain feeling of comradery of a stranger I had never met. “Chiara’s also a-” “Good Morning Class!” I was cut off by the teacher, unenthusiastically entering the room. Both Hermione and I glanced at one another, deciding to talk later.
After class ended, Hermione and I looked at one another, but not for long, neither one of us able to stop the images on that park bench from resurfacing. “Meet me at the entrance to the chamber. Bring Chiara.” l whispered, getting ready to bring lunch with me to the bathroom so we could talk without being seen.
After watching Lucas leave the classroom, Hermione could finally let out that breath she was inadvertently holding. She could hardly look at him even in her peripheral vision, her heart racing just sitting beside him, so much so she hardly even listened in class. But she had finally done it, she had finally broken down his walls of lies and tricks that protected himself from the world. She knew he would help, he was just that kind of person. All she had to do was wrangle it out of him.